TBI – Survivors, Caregivers, Family, and Friends

Posts tagged ‘Prisoner Without Bars’

“Another Fork in the Road” . . . Brain Injury Radio Network . . . . . Dr. David Figurski – Prisoner Without Bars

YOU ARE INVITED!

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You’ve heard my story about David’s Traumatic Brain Injury and how we have come to be in this place that we are now. It’s David’s turn to step up to the mic to talk about his perspective of living with a TBI, as I interview him about the past 9+ years. He promises that I may even learn something. I wonder if it’s about the black mark on the wall.

 

Come One! Come ALL!

(NOTE: New Day, Sunday – Same Time)

What:        Interview with Dr. David Figurski – Prisoner Without Bars. (Segment 4 of “Prisoner Without Bars: Conquering Traumatic Brain Injury”)

Why:         Hear David’s perspective of living with Traumatic Brain Injury

Where:     Brain Injury Radio Network

When:       Sunday, November 2, 2014

Time:         5:00p PDT (6:00p MDT, 7:00p CDT, and 8:00p EDT) 90 minute show

How:         Click: Brain Injury Radio Network.

Call In:    424-243-9540

Call In:     855-473-3711 toll free in USA

Call In:    202-559-7907 free outside US

or SKYPE

If you miss the show, but would like to still hear the interview, you can access the archive on On Demand listening. The archived show will be available after the show both on the Brain Injury Radio Network site and on my blog in “On the Air.”

(Clip Art compliments of Bing.)

“Another Fork in the Road” . . . Brain Injury Radio Network: “Prisoner Without Bars” (part 2)

Come one! Come ALL!putthis_on_calendar_clip_art

What:        “Another Fork in the Road” on Brain Injury Radio Network:                               “Prisoner Without Bars” (part 2)

Why:         Donna continues her story of David’s Traumatic Brain Injury and their life together after TBI.

Where:     Brain Injury Radio Network

When:       Monday, August 18, 2014

Time:         5:00p PDT (6:00p MDT, 7:00p CDT, and 8:00p EDT) 90 minute show

How:         Click: Brain Injury Radio Network.

Call In:    424-243-9540

Call In:     855-473-3711 toll free in USA

Call In:    202-559-7907 free outside US

or SKYPE

If you miss the show, but would like to still hear the interview, you can access the archive on On Demand listening (Archived show) will be available after the show

(Clip Art compliments of Bing.)

On the Air – Brain Injury Radio “Prisoner Without Bars” (segment 1)

On the Air – Brain Injury Radio

“Prisoner Without Bars” (segment 1)

by

Donna O’Donnell Figurski

 

images-1When I was asked to host my own radio show, my first reaction was disbelief, quickly followed by “Are you kidding?” Being a radio host is something I had never aspired to. It had never crossed my mind. I didn’t have the least idea of how to go about achieving a goal such as that.

I’ve never spoken in front of an adult audience, unless, of course, you count Back-To-School-Night audiences of parents who are dying to meet their child’s new teacher and see what their child will be doing for 6 hours each weekday while under my tutelage. My audiences were always 9 years old and under. They made up my “captive” audiences as I taught them to read, ‘rite, and do ‘rithmetic. (I admit some may have felt they were a “captured” audience.)

After I got over my first feeling of doubt, I let the idea tumble in my brain. I felt flattered, and the seed began to grow. “Why not?” I have a story to tell. I know a LOT about Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI). I had already written a book, “Prisoner Without Bars: Conquering Traumatic Brain Injury” (searching for a publisher) about David’s and my life living with his traumatic brain injury, and I write a blog dedicated totally to raising awareness of TBI and helping survivors and caregivers. So, I said, “YES!”

Then came the hours and days of preparation. Yes, I knew my story. It’s never far from my mind, but I wanted the show to be organized and cohesive. When the day of the show arrived, so did the butterflies that were doing a jitterbug in my stomach as the minutes clicked down the clock to showtime. “Your show will start in 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 second. You’re ‘On the Air.’” There was a second of dead air time before the Brain Injury Radio logo music began. Then there was no turning back…

“We lived a normal life…until we didn’t….”

I hope you’ll tune into my show the 1st and 3rd Monday evenings of every month. The show airs at 5:00p Pacific time and runs for 90 minutes.

See you “On the Air!”

 

(Clip Art compliments of Bing.)

TBI Tales: . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Dancing-in-the-Rain Happy

One of the mediators of a Traumatic-Brain-Injury group to which I belong posed a question to all the members. She asked – What makes YOU happy, deliriously happy, sing-out-loud happy+cartoon+girlhappy, dance-in-the-rain happy? It’s a question not often asked of us caregivers.

I thought for a second. That’s easy. Then my fingers flew over the keyboard as I typed my answer. But, before I hit the “Send” button, I stopped. I thought again. I let the idea roll around my brain for a few moments and reconsidered the question. What makes YOU happy, deliriously happy, whoop-to-the-moon happy? Was this a trick question?

I knew what would make me over-the-top happy. That would be for my husband, David, to be better – for me to wake up one morning and see him walk and run and drive again, hear him talk without his raspy voice, and never again fear that he will aspirate his food. Yes, that would make me crazy-happy. But, I knew that was not what she meant. I can almost guarantee that every one of us caregivers would have offered a version of the same answer. And, then her question would have become rather boring.

I considered some possibilities. I know many women take solace in going to the salon, to be pampered – a new haircut, a mani/pedi, a spa day with massage and facial. But for me, those are chores. In fact, I did do a mani/pedi today, and I couldn’t wait to get out of the salon. I know! Most would think I’m nuts. So, I pondered a while longer. What would make me gloriously happy???? Something just for me! And I knew! I knew from the moment my fingers first hit the keys. (I’m glad I didn’t delete my answer.) Having my book published! That would do it! That would make me deliriously happy, sing-out-loud happy, dance-in-the-rain happy. It would make me whoop-to-the-moon happy. Seeing my book, “Prisoner Without Bars: Conquering Traumatic Brain Injury,” in print on the shelves next to Lee and Bob Woodruff’s Book shelf banner“In An Instant,” Su Meck’s “I Forgot To Remember,” Gabriele Gifford and Mark Kelly’s “Gabby,” or Trisha Meile’s “I Am The Central Park Jogger” would make me gloriously, over-the-top happy. I bet you’d hear me whooping all the way to Nova Scotia and all parts in between.

In the meantime, I can be very happy when I finish writing a really good blog post (like this one), and folks stop by to read it, offer comments, and share it with their friends. Yep, that would make me happy too … but not as happy as a book contract.

As I say after each post:

Please leave a comment by clicking the blue words “Leave a Comment” below this post.

Feel free to follow my blog. Click on “Follow” on the lower right corner of your screen.anim0014-1_e0-1

If you like my blog, share it with your friends. It’s easy! Click the “Share” buttons below.

If you don’t like my blog, “Share” it with your enemies. I don’t care!

Feel free to “Like” my post.

Permission granted to “Reblog” my post.

(Clip Art compliments of Bing.)

Traumatic Brain Injury – TBI – PRISONERS WITHOUT BARS

tbi-touched-life-th-5As a writer for children, I never intended to write a book for adult readers – other than those adults who read picture books to their children as the stars fill the night sky. But, circumstances changed in an instant when my husband, David, suffered a Traumatic Brain Injury in 2005. I didn’t know what a “TBI” was. I had never heard or seen those letters together before. But, they would soon become a permanent thought in my head.

As David stumbled into our bedroom, his hand covering his right eye, I knew something was drastically wrong. As his pain intensified and the paramedics transported him to the emergency room, I didn’t know how seriously our lives were about to change. The man, my lover, and my best friend, disappeared.

After three brain surgeries, a new man emerged. He looked different. He sounded different. He was severely disabled. He couldn’t speak beyond guttural sounds. He couldn’t walk, dress, brush his teeth, feed himself, or take care of personal hygiene without assistance. At first it seemed that he didn’t even know me, which nearly broke my heart.

david-running-in-hall

David trying out his new running outfit just three weeks before his TBI. December 2004

David’s TBI has caused us to travel many long and bumpy roads. We still do nine years post-TBI, but it is a journey we take together. I met David when I was 16 years old. I knew in an instant that he would be my life-partner – for better or for worse. We’ve had the better. We’ve had the worse. We are striving for the better once again.

Though I lost the “boy/man” I fell in love with, I have fallen in love all over again with this new version of David. Though he may look and act differently, he is still the most caring, gentle, intelligent man I know. His physical disabilities did not deter him from returning to his

Donna & David 15 months AT (After Trauma) April 2006

Donna & David 15 months AT (After Trauma)
April 2006

laboratory at Columbia University a year later to oversee his and his students’ research, to write scientific papers, to become the editor of a book of research articles from scientists from around the world, and to be awarded a grant for his research.

Our journey is not over.

I’ve written David’s story, “Prisoners Without Bars: A Caregiver’s Story,” to share our journey with you, my readers. It is a story of tears and angst, of stress and confusion. The story will make you cry. It will make you laugh. It will make you wonder in disbelief just how this man is able to accomplish so much with so little. The story chronicles David’s strength and persistence, his tenacity to build a new life, and to get better against all odds. David’s story is a story of hope and inspiration.

It is also my story. As David’s wife and best friend and as his primary caregiver, I stand on the front line advocating for him every step of the way and cheerlead his every accomplishment. It’s a story that will take you with us on our journey of TBI.

I wrote the book between my caregiving duties of David, my teaching first and third graders, and when I was not sleeping. It is currently being sent to literary agents, and I hope that it will be published soon, so you can read the inside story of how David fought and is conquering Traumatic Brain Injury one unbalanced step at a time.anim0014-1_e0-1

As I say after each post:

Please leave a comment by clicking the blue words “Leave a Comment” below this post.

Feel free to follow my blog. Click on “Follow” on the lower right corner of your screen.

If you like my blog, share it with your friends. It’s easy! Click the “Share” buttons below.

If you don’t like my blog, “Share” it with your enemies. I don’t care!

Feel free to “Like” my post.

Permission granted to “Reblog” my post.

(Clip Art compliments of Bing.)

(Photos compliments of ME.)

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No memory of the day that changed my life

My name is Michelle Munt and this is my story about surviving a brain injury and what I continue to learn about it. This is for other survivors and their loved ones, but also to raise awareness of what can happen to those in an accident. This invisible injury too often goes undiagnosed and it can be difficult to find information about it. I will talk about things that have helped me as I continue to recover and invite others to see if it works for them too.

Everything and nothing. GM1123 😊

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